What does Rahu and Ketu mean ? Why are they important in vedic astrology? The role of rahu and ketu? This article contains all these information including generic effects of their dashas, aspects and more.
Rahu and ketu are points in space where there is occurance of eclipses. They are not physical planets which can reflect light. Rahu and ketu are also referred to as shadow planets. Rahu is the north node of the moon and ketu is the south node of the moon. Rahu and Ketu are always placed opposite to each other (7th from each other)in the birth chart. The head of the dragon is Rahu and the rest of the body is Ketu. So, according to mythology rahu does not have the body and ketu does not have the head.
They are a big part of vedic astrology and hold a key in the fulfilment of a person's life. Rahu is considered as a reflection of Saturn while Ketu is related with Mars. Rahu and ketu are important in transits because they both take longer time to transit a single zodiac sign. Rahu co rules the sign of aquarius with Saturn and Ketu co rules the sign of scorpio with Mars. Some astrologers believe that they co rule these signs and some don't. But in my opinion, it does work.
Rahu is the planet that makes you want all the materialistic things in life like all the fame and money. Rahu is also a very intelligent planet which wants to get things done through shortcuts. Rahu never gets satisfied because it is the head without the body and due to that it can't digest what it takes in. So, it will keep taking in. The house that rahu sits in is the house where we have the least experience. At the same time it is the house that we become obsessive about. It shows us this is the house we did not achieve or work well on in our past life. We will have to struggle to achieve the things represented by the house rahu sits in because we don't know how to deal with them in the initial stage. But the house/sign rahu sits will be the house/sign we will be the most passionate and obsessive about. We will want to do whatever it takes to conquer the things that house represents and that's due to the malefic nature of rahu. Example, a person with rahu in the 11th house will do whatever it takes to achieve their hopes and wishes or to get gains in life. If rahu is very negatively placed then that person could even kill or do illegal activities to achieve their goals. The dignity of rahu is studied by looking at the placement of the lord of rahu(depositer of rahu).That is, the strenght of rahu is depending on the strenght of the planet which is the lord of the sign rahu is placed in. There is no exhaltation or debilitation for rahu. Rahu can give you great success when placed strongly and/or involved in raj yogas(good combinations). For example Virat kohli( An Indian cricketer) got all the success, fame and wealth during the rahu mahadasha (time period). So, don't think rahu will always give negative results. Now, rahu does good or is comfortable in the signs of taurus, gemini, virgo and aquarius. The best house positions of rahu are the 3rd, 6th, 10th and 11th houses. Generally rahu is not comfortable in the signs of sagittarius, scorpio, pisces and even cancer because it is difficult for rahu to express itself in these signs. Rahu aspects the 5th, 7th and 9th place from its position. But the 7th aspect is not so strong because ketu will be sitting 7th from rahu. Rahu amplifies the quality of the planet it sits with (conjunct) and also the planets or houses it aspects. Rahu also gives obsession towards the things related to the house/ planet it aspects and create an illusion on that planet/house which may bring fear too. Example Rahu conjunct Sun will amplify or increase the ego of that person and sometimes that person can put an illusion on his/her ego by which he/she can act outside confidently while he/she is insecure inside.
Ketu represents moksha, liberation, occult, astrology, isolation, spirituality and matters related to these types. It is just the opposite of rahu. Ketu just wants to get detached from the worldly things and go towards spirituality. The house ketu sits in is the house we have good expertise in. It's like we have experienced those things related to the house ketu sits in our past life. We wont feel the need to achieve the things of the house ketu sits because we have already dealt with it in our past life. The house Ketu sits in is the house we wont be very intrested in and so we wont care about it much. But, we will get those things easily. There is no need to work hard to achieve the things related towards the house Ketu is placed because those things comes to us easily. For example, if a native is having ketu placed in the 2nd house, then that person wont have intrest or care about making wealth and assets but that native will also get wealth easily. Similar to rahu, ketus strenght is also judged by looking at its depositers placement. Generally ketu maha dasha(ruling period) will bring problems when you go more towards material gains. The lesson that ketu wants to teach in it's dasha is simple. The lesson is to not run behind material and worldly things because there is something much bigger than that. But if ketu is involved in powerful raj yogas, then even ketu can take a person to great heights. As far as the houses are concerned ketu does very well in the 2nd, 8th, 11th and 12th houses. The signs that ketu is very comfortable in are cancer, scorpio and pisces. Similar to rahu, ketu also aspects the 5th, 7th and 9th place from itself where the 7th aspect is not strong as rahu is sitting on the other side doing the opposite of ketu. But the meaning of the aspects of these two planets are different. Ketu's aspect gives detachment and seperation towards that house or planet. The aspects, conjunctions and placement of ketu shows where we feel the least amount of responsibility. Rahu amplifies the conjunct planet and ketu enables to look with in that planet.
Now, at the initial stage we may want to go towards what ketu represents and when we accomplish that easily, we will come to know that this is not what we want. Then we will start working with the things related to rahu's placement. Rahu is our true passion. In this life time we are meant to develop the house rahu sits in. But people go towards ketu because they know how to deal with it while rahu is that unknown energy. Especially if the depositer of ketu is strong then that person will have good inclination to ketu's placement. If ketu is strong, then that shows we did very well in that area of life in the past lifetime. Since we did good, our subconcious mind will get attracted towards it. Its okay to give attention towards ketu's placement but it should be only used as a help for rahu. That means we have to use what we have expertise in(ketu) to achieve the important and challenging part(rahu). Working with rahu will evolve our soul and lead us to higher fulfilment.
Another method in judging the strength of planets and their capacity to influence the birth chart through vedic astrology. Which planet can influence us more and which planet we will have to deal with more often in our life.
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